Wiltshire Council, in partnership with the Swindon and Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership (SWLEP), is doing all it can to support businesses in the county that may be affected by COVID-19.
In the recent budget, the government announced a range of financial support, including help for businesses that experience increased costs or cash flow problems, expanded rate relief, a business interruption loan scheme, and a grant scheme.
The government also announced yesterday additional support for businesses as part of a £330 billion package of measures to protect businesses. This includes:
- giving all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses a 100% business rates holiday for the next 12 months
- increasing grants to businesses eligible for Small Business Rate Relief or rural rate relief from £3,000 to £10,000
- providing further £25,000 grants to retail, hospitality and leisure businesses operating from smaller premises, with a rateable value over £15,000 and below £51,000
Wiltshire Council is coordinating a team to provide advice and support to businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak, working with the Swindon and Wiltshire Growth Hub to ensure our businesses have all the information needed at this critical time.
Cllr Philip Whitehead, Leader of Wiltshire Council and Cabinet Member for Economic Development, said: “We recognise that businesses throughout Wiltshire will be concerned about the impact that COVID-19 will have on their livelihood, and we want to do all we can to protect Wiltshire businesses and safeguard jobs.
“The government has announced a range of support for public services, individuals and businesses whose finances are affected by COVID-19, including a one-off grant of £10,000 to businesses currently eligible for Small Business Rate Relief or Rural Rate Relief, to help meet ongoing costs.
“This is a fast moving situation and information will be looked at and communicated as it becomes available. We are still awaiting further details on how this grant and other benefits will be rolled out. Further details will be posted on www.wiltshire.gov.uk and the Swindon and Wiltshire Growth Hub website as soon as they are made available.
“Should any business need help before details are released, I would urge to them to contact either the Swindon and Wiltshire Growth Hub, Wessex Chambers of Commerce or the Federation of Small Businesses.
“Help and advice is available, and we will be releasing more details on how businesses can apply for grants as soon as we have them.”
For more information on the grants and support available, please see: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-employees-employers-and-businesses
To find out more including advice, news and announcements, please see the Swindon and Wiltshire Growth Hub support page (registration required): https://growthhub.swlep.co.uk/topics/Coronavirus_COVID19
Wessex Chambers of Commerce (https://www.inspirebiz.co.uk) is also offering help and advice to all firms, including non-members, and more information is also available from the Federation of Small Businesses (https://www.fsb.org.uk/resources-page/advice-to-small-businesses-and-fsb-members-about-the-novel-coronavirus-covid-19.html) and the CBI (https://www.cbi.org.uk/articles/supporting-businesses-impacted-by-the-coronavirus/).
Further guidance from the government on the details of the business rates holiday are expected in the next few days and details of the grant schemes are expected in the next few weeks.